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Seneca Nation to build wind turbine off Route 5 in Irving

The Seneca Nation of Indians will break ground Wednesday on a $6 million project that will build a wind turbine in Irving that is expected to reduce tribal electricity costs by $400,000 a year.

The project will involve the construction of a 2-megawatt wind turbine on 1.5 acres of tribal-owned land off Lucky Layne Road, near the Gil Lay Memorial Sports Arena, just east of Route 5.

The turbine, whose tower will be 265 feet tall, will have the capacity to generate about 5,000 megawatt-hours of electricity annually. The power then will be sold to National Grid, yielding $400,000 in credits that can be used to reduce the nation’s annual $1 million electric bill.

The project has received $1.5 million in funding from the U.S. Department of Energy and $1 million from the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority. The wind turbine is the Seneca Nation’s first renewable energy project and will help the nation reduce its reliance on “outside utility companies and power generators,” said Anthony J. Giacobbe, the general manager of the nation’s tribally-owned Seneca Energy business.